Train for the challenges in the field

PoliceOne’s fitness tip from June 7 raises an important point: If your running regime consists only of running on flat surfaces in decent temperatures, remember that foot pursuits happen in all kinds of weather on all kinds of surfaces.

Consider adding variance to your workout strategy to facilitate better performance in challenging settings. Try running a diversified “cross-country” type course that requires the kinds of physical movements you might be forced to perform in a foot pursuit — things like jumping over ground obstacles, scaling a chain link fence, jumping over a wall, quickly pushing through tight squeezes between buildings or fighting your way through brush, etc. Imagine the kinds of settings you might encounter in your area and tailor your running trail to meet the demands they may present. Also try to add weather challenges to your workout. Make an effort to run in the rain, snow and heat depending on your local climate.

Running in a controlled-temperature atmosphere on a flat, comfortable surface is fine and necessary for a variety of reasons, but adding surface and weather variances to your workout will help you more realistically train for the kinds of challenges you could very easily encounter in the field.

PoliceOne user “samuelx” took the post a step further in his comment:

“If you’re gonna train realistically for a foot pursuit, however, why stop there? Run in boots. Run in your duty uniform and gear (or maybe simulate with a weight vest or backpack). Put out radio traffic while you’re running (call out the pursuit, request resources, set up the containment, etc). Catch street signs, addresses, landmarks, etc while you’re running and broadcast that info. Mix in some short bursts of intense exercises simulating a fight or fights throughout the run (better yet, have some training partners hold pads for you or spar/grapple with you, etal during or at the end of the pursuit). Take it further and add a quick primary weapon or BUG course of fire at the end.”

In what kind of environment do you usually train?

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